I guess it depends who you ask and what you are specifically working on. I think you can shape successfully in a variety of ways. Some people are very specific on what you can and can't do for clicker training, but you don't even necessarily have to use clicker training for shaping. I don't have a lot of rules when I train my dog, I will do whatever works, within reason of course. I don't like limiting myself and I love trying different types of methods and coming up with clever ways to show my dog what I want. However, in some training sessions I will specifically work on clicker training and sit down with just a container of treats and a clicker and just work on my timing and letting River try to figure things out on his own.